Mini has been expanding their lineup fairly steadily ever since they were taken over by BMW, and in recent years, this has started to become rather confusing. So right here at the outset I will tell you that the Paceman is essentially a two-door version of the Countryman crossover. There are a few other cosmetic differences, but this is basically the root of it. There is a sloping roofline now as well, that gives the Paceman a more coupe-like appearance. The result is very Range Rove Evoque-like (only smaller), and that comes complete with an Evoque-esque tiny gun slit of a rear window. But it’s not really a bad aesthetic, and it does seem to lend a bit of extra sportiness.
The taillights are arranged horizontally for the first time on a Mini, and together with the squashed window, the Paceman is barely recognizable as a Mini. The chrome lettering spread across the back which spells out Paceman is also a first for the brand. The Paceman is mostly the same dimensions as the Countryman, although the sloping roof does reduce a certain amount of the rear cargo space. Mini talks a lot about the Paceman retaining the classic Mini go-kart handling, and sport suspension will be offered as a no-cost option. But it is a little difficult to imagine that the Paceman’s considerable heft can be hauled around with anything resembling sportiness by the standard engine’s 122 horsepower. An S version will be offered though, and this should make things right.
The price is set at $23,900, and if you’re looking for something like the Evoque but you haven’t got the money, this is exactly the car for you. All-wheel-drive will be an option as well, and the car should be as capable as the Countryman, which is a positive thing. It is just possible that Mini didn’t need to give the vehicle a different name just because it has two fewer doors, seeing as their naming scheme is confusing enough as it is. But don’t let that influence your opinion of the car, which will go on sale in March.